Thursday, August 11, 2011

Foods From the Past

Susan and I were talking about places where we used to eat, and that led to conversations about now-nonexistent foods that we ate regularly at one point or another.

Anyone remember the BellBeefer? First time I took Susan to Taco Bell, she had never had Mexican food of any sort, so she ordered the BellBeefer (taco beef on a bun with various accoutrements); it took three or four more trips to the West Rome Taco Bell to get her to try anything else. (This was the early 1970s, when there were no authentic Mexican restaurants in Rome... Taco Bell was all there was!)

Susan also enjoyed the enchirito, a cross between an enchilada and a burrito that Taco Bell offered for a while. Beef and bean filling, along with chopped onions, in a flour tortilla, topped with generous helpings of Taco Bell red sauce and black olives (Susan always asked for extra black olives). That was her Taco Bell item of choice for years. I understand they brought it back for a while in the late 1990s and early 2000's, but we were no longer eating at Taco Bell by that time, so it slipped past us.

At Village Inn, we used to get a shrimp and black olive pizza. I no longer have any desire to eat shrimp, but we used to love getting a shrimp & black olive pizza and a sausage, pepperoni, and mushroom pizza and alternating slices of the two.

The McDLT, one of my favorite McDonald's hamburgers (another place where we no longer eat)--it came in a special container with the meat and the bottom of the bun in one compartment and the lettuce, tomato, and top of the bun on the other. The package kept the hot side hot and the cool side cool, or so the advertising claimed.

From time to time, we ate at Lum's where we'd have a hot dog steamed in beer. Neither Susan nor I drink beer at all, but for some reason this approach made for a very tasty hot dog!

I have hardly ever found a deep dish pizza that I liked, but the Upper Crust at the Galleria in Marietta was the exception. They had a stuffed crust pizza--basically a pizza crust, oodles of ingredients, cheese, and sauce, topped with another crust and baked into an incredibly dense, fully loaded "pizza pot pie," as one friend called it. I mourned the loss of this restaurant, and have never found a deep dish style pizza I liked as well.

Butch's hamburgers. When I first bought Dr. No's in the 1980s, there was a restaurant in the shopping center known as Butch's, run by a burly fellow named Butch (what a surprise!). He made one of the best burgers we ever ate--a heavy, loaded burger topped with generous helpings of mayonnaise, mustard, and ketchup. Alas, Butch got out of the restaurant biz in the late 80s, and nothing ever came along to take his place. Don't know what he did to give his burger such a distinctive taste, but no one has matched it.

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